Development of high-precision nuclear reaction calculation method that is the key to developing new neutron applications
—Calculation results released as a database available for neutron applications used in fields like basic science or medical treatment—
Efforts are underway to develop new neutron applications in fields like basic science and medical treatment, and these require high-energy neutrons that cannot be achieved with conventional neutron sources. Methods for generating neutrons through nuclear reactions caused by “deuterons” that contain one proton and one neutron are drawing increased attention, however there had been difficulty accurately predicting the quantity of neutrons obtained from such nuclear reactions under a wide range of conditions.
Attention turned to the quantum mechanical properties of deuterons that could not be achieved using traditional methods of prediction, and a new calculation method was developed to predict the quantity of neutrons generated from nuclear reactions of deuterons through a combination of theoretical models that factor in these properties. Based on comparisons with actual values, it was verified that a degree of accuracy 4-times that of traditional calculation methods had been achieved.
The values predicted with this calculation method were collated to be utilized with simulation software used for designing neutron sources, and released as the JENDL/DEU-2020 nuclear data library.
Using JENDL/DEU-2020 significantly increases the reliability of simulations. This makes it easier to study, design and operate a range of neutron sources suited to specific applications, and is hoped will spur the development of new neutron applications in a broad range of fields including nuclear physics experiments and production of radioactive materials used for medical treatment.